In last week’s blog I listed a number of tasks that I hoped to progress during the week but did say that our good friends were remaining with us and that not everything was likely to get done. I was right – and you can probably guess which of those didn’t get completed!
I did mention that we had moved a very large piece of slate from in front of our own home to a new position in the orchard to create a peaceful seating area in the shade but also to free up the terrace for a jasmine plant that we had been given by some other friends.
Most of Monday was spent completing the new bench which was principally making it stable enough to sit on so it wouldn’t wobble and laying slate underneath. The slate I used were the off-cuts of the slates we put on the roof of Grange which I wanted to break into smaller pieces but I couldn’t find an efficient way to do this quickly. I tried smashing it against a wall, jumping on it with walking boots and even putting it in a concrete mixer but none was as effective as simply standing and bashing it with a lump hammer. Slow and laborious certainly but it achieved the aim – and it amazed me just how much was required to give a decent covering, but at least it used up nearly all of the off-cuts that we had.
The seat now looks great and is the perfect spot to sit and relax in the shade to relax and read a book or, as it also sited to receive our Kergudon wifi, listen to the radio, catch up with emails – if you must while on holiday. As the plants around it grow and mature it will become an even more peaceful and attractive spot, and when we replace the old apple tree currently behind it with something more attractive so it will be fantastic.
We are pleased with how the garden is developing and growing, some guests who left on Saturday having spent a couple of weeks with us wrote that it is a ‘garden of Eden’ in their comments book. While this is very flattering we are not sure it is there yet but we are getting there and, every now and then something lovely appears that we weren’t aware of including these lilies which shot up in Granary garden for the first time last year. We haven’t done anything major to the garden yet but when we do we will have to think about what to do with these.
Having moved the bench it allowed us to reposition the jasmine that we were gifted earlier in the year. We had re-potted the plant as soon as we had received it and it has grown amazingly so I needed to erect a few wires on the wall to support it and we hope that it continues to flourish and fill the space with fabulous jasmine scent (sadly unlike the jasmine that we bought for the front of Hayloft which seems to be about the only genus of jasmine that has no scent!)
This little terrace is a real sun-trap from early morning to late afternoon making it the perfect breakfast and lunch spot. You may also be able to see a small task that I completed on a wet day earlier in the year above the door to Kergudon.
I did manage to progress the floor above Grange although as I knew I was not able to complete it as I ran out of boards and won’t get more until next week (assuming there are some in stock in my favourite DIY store!) However, I didn’t progress the hedging (yet) nor the cladding on the back of the open garage bays as our electrician wasn’t able to visit us until yesterday so they have been put off until next week.
What I did also progress, associated with Grange, is to start clearing behind the building. The plan is to construct a wood storage area behind Grange and to do so I want to level the ground and had to clear the piles of stone and slate that I have discarded there over the last year or so. Once the wood store is built I can start moving the various piles of wood that are collecting around the garden and, more importantly, dismantle the unattractive temporary wood store in the garden. To build it I will also be able to use some of the material currently being stored in one of the garage bays which then allows me to clear and complete a bay – its all so tied up together!
One of the things that I had to do was to cut back a lot of vegetation which had grown in the year since we have been building Grange including lots of new growth on the stumps of the trees that we have felled. I haven’t yet found the best way to kill a number of stumps, mainly sycamore, which continue to sprout and grow – any ideas will be appreciated.
Otherwise the week has been having fun with friends and celebrating a special day for Dave which has allowed a lot of time off. On Thursday we travelled to Benodet, a seaside resort on the south coast of Brittany, about an hour away, to have lunch with some of the friends who were with us the week before. Much of Friday was spent picnicking on the shore of Lac du Drennec with our friends who were still with us and the weekend has been mostly recovering from 2 weeks of fun – which meant that we missed the rescheduled Fete National Lac du Drennec fireworks last night (was too wet that night in July). That was sad but there will always be next year.
Lots to pick up and continue with next week – I will keep you updated!!